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hawaiian snail

This is the shell of the Achatina fulica, or giant African land snail.  This species has become a problem in many areas of the world, including Hawai’i.  It is an invasive species that has pushed the native species of tree snail to endangered status.

It’s on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s list of 100 Most Invasive Species Worldwide.

It competes with the native snail species for food, and is highly destructive to the native vegetation.

As if that isn’t bad enough, did I mention that it can kill you?

There’s a nematode that lives on the snails that can give you eosiniphilic meningitis.  The nematode is rat lungworm (angiostrongylus cantonensis), and it can cause thousands of tiny worms to hatch in your brain!

And you thought I was kidding about the “deadly” part of the title.



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